Environment Canterbury Youth Rōpū

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The Youth Rōpū is a voluntary group for young people aged 14-24, coordinated by the Youth Engagement and Education Team at Environment Canterbury.

The goal of the Youth Rōpū is to build the relationship between the Council and young people to empower each other to be good kaitiaki of our environment.

Now in their second year, the Youth Rōpū has engaged in meaningful ways with youth, staff and Councillors to bring a youth perspective to decisions.

The Youth Rōpū are looking for two new representatives to join, representing:

  • North Canterbury
  • Mana whenua.

Please ensure before applying that you are eligible to represent the North Canterbury constituent or mana whenua by checking the 'Constituency' section below.

The Youth Rōpū is a voluntary group for young people aged 14-24, coordinated by the Youth Engagement and Education Team at Environment Canterbury.

The goal of the Youth Rōpū is to build the relationship between the Council and young people to empower each other to be good kaitiaki of our environment.

Now in their second year, the Youth Rōpū has engaged in meaningful ways with youth, staff and Councillors to bring a youth perspective to decisions.

The Youth Rōpū are looking for two new representatives to join, representing:

  • North Canterbury
  • Mana whenua.

Please ensure before applying that you are eligible to represent the North Canterbury constituent or mana whenua by checking the 'Constituency' section below.

  • Youth Rōpū background

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    14 November, 2019
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    In 2018 a group of young people formed a working group (Youth Participation Platform Working Group or YPPWG) with support from the Environment Canterbury Youth Engagement and Education Team (YEET) and funding from the Ministry of Youth Development.

    The goal of this group was to establish a platform for young people and decision-makers at Environment Canterbury to work together. This bought to life the aspirations, conversations and ideas that have been developed over the course of two years.

    As a result, the Youth Rōpū met for the first time in May 2019. Members, who are aged 14-24, all share an interest in the environment, developing their leadership skills and being part of an exciting team of young people that make a difference.

  • Constituency

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    13 August, 2020
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    The Youth Rōpū are made up from two representatives from each of our seven constituencies and two mana whenua representatives. Therefore we have 16 members.

    The constituencies are:

    1. North Canterbury/Ōpukepuke
    2. Mid-Canterbury/Ōpākihi
    3. South Canterbury/Ōtuhituhi
    4. Christchurch North East/Ōrei
    5. Christchurch West/Ōpuna
    6. Christchurch Central/Ōhoko
    7. Christchurch South/Ōwhanga

    This interactive map will help you establish which constituency you are in.

  • Representative areas

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    13 August, 2020

    We are looking for two representatives: North Canterbury and mana whenua.

    The North Canterbury representative criteria must be that you either live in, go to school or work in, or be from that area.

    The mana whenua representative must come from the Canterbury area.


  • What is involved?

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    14 November, 2019
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    The Youth Rōpū follows a traditional committee structure with a chair, deputy chair and secretary which are elected by the group at the start of each year.

    To deliver on the group's five priority areas, members opt-in to a variety of ongoing and project-based teams. Examples of these teams include:

    • Social media – responsible for planning and running social media activities and posts
    • Coordination – responsible for the internal organisation of the Youth Rōpū
    • Partnerships – project-based team focused on building relationships with other youth organisations
    • Water Zone Committees – project-based team working to implement youth representatives on Canterbury Water Zone Committees
    • Annual Plan – project-based team which prepared and presented advice to Council on Environment Canterbury’s Annual Plan.


    Baseline commitment

    To attend a face-to-face meeting every six weeks in Christchurch; a fortnightly one-hour online meeting and be active in at least one team. This would be a minimum time commitment of six hours per month. Membership is on a voluntary basis.

    Membership term

    A Youth Rōpū member may hold a term of either one or two years, which must be indicated in the application process. At the end of their term, a member can go through the application process for another one- or two-year term and can continue to apply for consecutive terms until they turn 25 years of age. They must step down at the first recruitment period after their 25th birthday.

  • Goals & values

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    Mission statement

    The Environment Canterbury Youth Rōpū exists to build a two-way relationship between young people and Environment Canterbury to empower each other to be good kaitiaki of our environment.

    Goals

    • Information is attainable for young people: The Youth Rōpū helps Environment Canterbury share attainable information to young people so young people are informed about what is happening in a meaningful way.
    • Young people know how they can make a difference: The Youth Rōpū helps young people to see how they can make a difference and can demand the change they want and/or need.
    • Environment Canterbury incorporates youth voices into decision making: The Youth Rōpū provides a pathway for Environment Canterbury to receive the fresh and sustainable perspective that young people bring.
    • Young people can engage with their regional councillors: The Youth Rōpū allows young people to engage with elected representatives in a way that moves beyond tokenism.


    Core values

    • Respect – We are committed to valuing each person’s view and making all feel welcome and included.
    • Passion – We are committed to being positive and motivated by our purpose.
    • Kaitiakitanga/stewardship or guardianship – We are committed to caring for the things that are precious to us, particularly our natural resources and each other.
    • Resilience/aumangea – We are committed to being determined and helping each other through the hard times.
    • Integrity – We are committed to doing things for the right reasons and upholding our promises.
  • Priorities and projects

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    Priority areas

    • Advice to Councillors and staff – to inform process and decisions
    • Attend Environment Canterbury meetings of relevance – to be a youth voice and presence
    • Consultations and submissions – to influence decisions being made
    • Social media – to engage a wide range of young people in relevant issues
    • Organising events – to foster youth engagement with relevant issues.


    Past projects

    • Developed foundation document and kaupapa
    • Established @ecan_youth_ropu Instagram page
    • Hosted the iSpeak Youth Connect on the Zero Carbon Act event in partnership with PYLAT (Pacific Young Leaders and Transformation Council) and Youth Voice Canterbury
    • Co-wrote a submission on the Zero Carbon Act and presented to the Select Committee
    • Supported the Christchurch Youth Council Amazing Race Event
    • Established relationship with Environment Canterbury Councillors and how to work together
    • Attended briefings on key Environment Canterbury portfolios
    • Successfully advocated for youth members to be added as community members to Canterbury Water Zone Committees, with several Youth Rōpū members already having or soon to be appointed to their local committees
    • Engaged with and provided advice to Council on Environment Canterbury's 2020 Annual Plan.


    Upcoming projects

    • Youth engagement on the Environment Canterbury Long-Term Plan
    • Developing relationships with other youth organisations in Canterbury to work towards a hui in 2021
    • Continuing to run monthly youth meetups in Christchurch and Timaru to engage with young people across Canterbury.